An end of week recap
This is a weekly post in which I summarize books read, reviewed and currently on my TBR shelf. In addition to a variety of literary titbits, I look ahead to forthcoming features, see what’s on the night-stand and keep readers abreast of various book-related happenings.
THE GOOD, THE BAD & THE TBR >>
* A Fun Factual Challenge *
Nonfiction November has commenced, and I have written my first post on this week’s chosen theme. >> NONFICTION NOVEMBER: Week 1 – My Year in Nonfiction >>
* The Margaret Atwood Shelfie *
Margaret Atwood Reading Month began on the 1st November. For my first Atwood related post I combined this annual celebration of the author’s work with Bibliobeth’s fun Shelfie by Shelfie tag. >> BOOK TAG: Shelfie by Shelfie #2 >>
* Lit Crit Blogflash *
I’m going to share with you six of my favourite literary posts from around the blogosphere. There are so many talented writers posting high-quality book features and reviews, it was difficult to limit the list to only these few – all of them published over the last week or two:
Yes, Margaret Atwood Has Written Children’s Books – Margaret Atwood “wears various hats”, writes Gretchen Bernet-Ward on Thoughts Become Words. “Being a kidlit fan,” she particularly likes “the quirky nature of her children’s stories.”
The Tin Flute by Gabrielle Roy – Highly recommended – Emma at Book Around The Corner describes this classic Canadian novel as “a wonderful book about a working-class neighbourhood” in 1940s Montreal.
‘Denial: Holocaust History on Trial’ by Deborah E. Lipstadt – Kirsty, one half of the theliterarysisters, is “still baffled as to how anyone can dispute the horrors of the Holocaust” after reading Denying the Holocaust: The Growing Assault on Truth and Memory, Lipstadt’s 1993 record of the legal case brought against her by the British historian and Holocaust denier, David Irving.
Wise Children by Angela Carter: Book and Theatre Review – Clare of A Little Blog of Books went to see Wise Children at London’s Old Vic theatre – she also picked up a copy of Carter’s final novel from the library. A “life-affirming celebration of theatre and showbusiness” is the way she describes the stage adaption, and the book she says was “stuffed with detail and inspired by an eclectic range of sources.”
Older Brother – Tom Carlisle describes Daniel Mella’s new novel as “fiction at its best” and “a future classic”. Read his review at The Independent Literary Fiction Blog.
Elizabeth Kleinhenz in conversation with Chris Wallace – about Germaine Greer – Sue T from Whispering Gums attended an ANU Meet the Author event in Canberra featuring Christine Wallace in conversation with Elizabeth Kleinhenz. In this fascinating post she gives a detailed account of an “excellent conversation”.
* Irresistible Items *
Umpteen fascinating articles appeared on my bookdar last week. I generally make a point of tweeting my favourite finds, but in case you missed anything, here are a handful of interesting snippets:
Vintage: An editor’s guide to the VINTAGE European Classics series – Discover the classic European novels that shaped our cultural heritage and journey across the continent and through its history with Dutch journalist Geert Mak in this Vintage editor’s guide to the greats.
New Books in German: The Grande Dame of Literary Translation: Anthea Bell at Eighty – When New Books in German celebrated its twentieth birthday in 2016, one of the UK’s “most renowned and prolific translators and cherished long-time members of the NBG editorial committee” celebrated her eightieth. Sadly, Anthea Bell died last month, but the piece is well worth rereading.
The Guardian: This is a great time for writing by women – so why are we still considered second-rate? – Male writers seldom admit to being influenced by female authors. In her Weekend column, Elena Ferrante asks why.
The Bookseller: Faber to bring out previously unpublished Plath short story – Benedicte Page reveals that “Faber is to publish Mary Ventura and the Ninth Kingdom, a previously unpublished short story written by Sylvia Plath as a college assignment in 1952, as part of its Faber Stories series celebrating the house’s 90th anniversary.
The New York Times Style Magazine: In Literature, Who Decides When Homage Becomes Theft? – “Appropriation goes both ways, and increasingly it’s being seen as a creative freedom for writers who have been excluded from the literary canon”, writes Ligaya Mishan.
Melville House: Reading groups are more important than you think: they’re radical – Michael Seidlinger believes book groups are “safe spaces where big ideas still get a chance to shine.”
Book Riot: 50 Must-Reads of Slavic Literature – In addition to the Russian classics, Leah Rachel von Essen recommends books from Bosnia, Slovenia, Poland and many other Slavic countries.
Electric Literature: Pulitzer Finalist Luis Urrea Recommends Five Books That Aren’t By Men – The author of The House of Broken Angels chooses his favourite books by women.
Scribe: Notes from a Public Typewriter: Q&A with Michael Gustafson – “Michael Gustafson, co-owner of Literati Bookstore on his public typewriter, the future of bookstores, and his new book Notes from a Public Typewriter.”
CBC: A tiny bookstore had to move — so they formed a 200-person human chain – A human chain of 200 people moved October Books, a store in Southampton, to its new home.
BBC News: Judge’s copy of Lady Chatterley’s Lover fetches £56K at auction – The original copy of D.H. Lawrence’s novel Lady Chatterley’s Lover owned by the presiding judge of the famed obscenity trial of 1960 has been sold at auction in London.
Book Patrol: Time to Pick the Oddest Book Title of the Year – Michael Lieberman reveals the finalists in the Diagram Prize for Oddest Book Title of the Year 2018. Titles include Joy of Boiling Water and Jesus on Gardening.
BuzzFeed: 14 Illustrations That’ll Make All Book Lovers Laugh – Farrah Penn collects an assortment of cartoons depicting the amusing realities of being a reader.
Literary Hub: Literary Magazines Are Born to Die – Five defunct journals Nick Ripatrazone says we should not forget.
World Literature Today: 2018 ALTA National Translation Award Winners – The American Literary Translators Association (ALTA) has named its 2018 National Translation Award winners.
The Paris Review: The Scent of a Novel – “Is it possible to make a synesthetic translation from the reading experience into an expensive vial of perfume?” asks Julia Berick.
The New York Times: Tiny Books Fit in One Hand. Will They Change the Way We Read? – Penguin Random House’s Dutton imprint has released its first batch of miniature books the size of a mobile phone.
Passa Porta: 300 years of Robinson Crusoe, or the colonist revisited – “Next spring will mark the 300th anniversary of the publication of Robinson Crusoe” writes Delaney Nolan. “A birthday that raises questions about (de)colonisation and migration, nature versus culture, the power of the word etc.”
If there is something you would particularly like to see on Winding Up the Week or if you have any suggestions, questions or comments for Book Jotter in general, please drop me a line or comment below. I would be delighted to hear from you.
Thank you for taking the time to read this post. I wish you a week bountiful in books and rich in reading.
NB In this feature, ‘winding up’ refers to the act of concluding something and should not be confused with the British expression: ‘wind-up’ – an age-old pastime of ‘winding-up’ friends and family by teasing or playing pranks on them. If you would like to know more about this expression, there’s an excellent description on Urban Dictionary.